Barstool’s Dave Portnoy sours on Trump return, says ‘divisive’ former president worse option than Biden

Dave Portnoy, founder of Barstool Sports, seems to be flirting with the Dark Side.

After making a name for himself as a free-thinker and rejecter of tedious liberal pieties, Portnoy now claims that he would prefer Joe Biden in a 2024 matchup between him and his predecessor. Actually, he hedged somewhat, saying that former President Donald Trump is too “divisive”—a curious accusation from a man whose schtick is largely built around being as provocative as possible.

Say it ain’t so, Dave.

Portnoy sat down on Wednesday for an interview with the Nelk Boys, a Canadian comedy group, on their “Full Send” podcast. The hosts, Jesse Sebastiani and Bob Menery, asked Portnoy about his preferred choice in the 2024 presidential race: Trump or Biden.

“That’s two bad options to me,” Portnoy responded, evasively. “Trump more so, because I think he would be so divisive. Like, intentionally so—like, they are intentionally divisive and that’s their audience, but, in this country, regardless of what you think of him and his politics, and I think he does get a bad rap for a lot of the stuff, but it doesn’t matter. He’s broken brains.”

On the other hand, it wasn’t exactly a ringing endorsement of Joe Biden. But it’s an odd reversal for someone who’s increased his cachet considerably by criticizing the excesses and absurdities of an increasingly humorless and totalitarian liberal media. Portnoy made waves by signaling his support for Trump, writing a brief piece in 2015 entitled “I’m Officially Voting for Donald Trump.”

It wasn’t the sort of thing likely to endear him to the leftist opinion-makers and gatekeepers who make up the country’s (so far) unofficial Thought Police.

“There I said it,” Portnoy wrote, no doubt relishing the innumerable conniption fits his article would spawn.

“I am voting for Donald Trump. I don’t care if he’s a joke. I don’t care if he’s racist. I don’t care if he’s sexist. I don’t care about any of it. I hope he stays in the race and I hope he wins. Why? Because I love the fact that he is making other politicians squirm. I love the fact he says sh-t nobody else will say regardless of how ridiculous it is.”

Portnoy then went on to echo what many voters felt at the time—and, incidentally, still feel today, and with added fervency, given a little over a year under the sway of a president who virtually epitomizes the DC Swamp.

“Our government is so f—ed up nothing can get done no matter who is President. All we get every 4 years is hypocritical, fake ass politicians pointing their fingers at each other and blaming everything on everybody else. Every 4 years politicians will say ‘Are you sick of business as usual’ and then nothing changes and they do it all over again in the next election. Well at least Trump is entertaining and says funny sh-t. He’s like a 1 man real life political mockumentary and that’s the best you can hope for at this point.”

Amen, brother. In the years since Trump’s election, Portnoy went on to make quite the name for himself as a ferocious critic of Democratic lockdown orders and authoritarian vaccine mandates and has ridiculed the insufferable bullying of the American left. He also put his money where his mouth is, and created the non-profit Barstool Fund to help struggling small businesses survive in the face of restrictive lockdowns in blue states.

Predictably, this drew the ire of leftist activists, with Business Insider duly publishing allegations that Portnoy had committed sexual assault against six women on various occasions. The claims remain unverified, nor have any charges been filed against Portnoy as a result of these allegations. On the contrary, Portnoy has launched legal actions against Business Insider for printing the libelous accusations.

During his appearance on the Nelk Boys’ podcast, one of the hosts asked Portnoy a question that probably more than a few listeners were wondering about themselves.

“What do you get for going on Fox News then?”

“Huge audience,” Portnoy responded, without missing a beat. “Like what do I get for going on Nelk Boys—huge audience.”


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Todd Jaquith


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